Data Center Tech Blog

SanDisk® has put in place a number of building blocks for its data center offerings over the last three years to help bring the flash-transformed enterprise to life. This includes the introduction of leadership technologies such as our ULLtraDIMM SSD, ZetaScale software and the 4TB SAS Optimus MAX SSD, as well as the acquisitions of Pliant, FlashSoft, Schooner Technologies, Smart Storage Systems and, most recently, Fusion-io. To ensure we stay on the right path, we want to stay attuned to what challenges IT professionals and decision makers are confronting in the data centers of today and tomorrow. What better way to do this than to reach out to them directly to understand the issues they face and what they want and need to achieve?

It is exactly this approach that led to SanDisk “Data Bytes”, which consists of an ongoing series of clipboard surveys taken during large industry events such as Interop, Oracle Open World, Open Compute Summit, etc. The SanDisk team then analyzes these findings in order to better understand the needs and concerns of IT professionals and help them accelerate their applications more effectively with more cost efficient infrastructure and innovative software and hardware solutions. The ultimate goal of this initiative is to be able to work side-by-side with our customers to solve real-world issues successfully.

Initial Findings

Data Bytes Survey Results Flash Benefits

With our initial survey conducted at Oracle Open World, we secured more than 150 survey responses on questions ranging from the key challenges they are facing and how they stack rank them, to how they are currently using flash and if they are planning to grow their data center environments in the next few years. Let me share some of the most interesting takeaways with you:

  • Over 60% of respondents currently use flash in the data center in some way.
  • Flash is primarily being used today to accelerate database applications.
  • A combined 76% of respondents see flash technology as either “Very Important” or “Somewhat Important” in meeting their evolving enterprise environment needs.
  • 25% of respondents feel Big Data analytics will be their next upgrade, another 18% point to better utilization of cloud services, and 12% believe that server virtualization is the next upgrade for their data center environments.
  • Almost 83% of respondents feel it is very likely or somewhat likely that their organization will upgrade to flash in some capacity in the next five years.

What We Have Learned

Data Bytes offers us a great opportunity to gain some important insights and helps us in connecting with customers and discussing the strategic application of flash technology for their particular needs. I find it astounding that even though using flash in the data center is a relatively new concept, the fact that over 60% of respondents currently use flash in their infrastructure points to flash technology’s rapidly growing adoption by IT professionals in just a few short years.

Furthermore, 55% of respondents sighted big data analytics, utilization of cloud services and server virtualization as their next upgrade. These are areas where flash is making a big impact, and topics we frequently discuss here on the IT Blog, and it indicates that there are opportunities for SanDisk to demonstrate how flash can meet these workload needs—i.e. speed up data center applications while lowering infrastructure costs.

Moving Forward – Come Share Your Bytes at Gartner Data Center

Though this is the first completed Data Bytes survey, we plan to continue connecting with IT professionals at industry events around the world in the future. Come meet me at the upcoming Gartner Data Center Conferences in London on November 24-25, or in Las Vegas on December 2-5, 2014, and talk with us about the infrastructure and application demands your organization is facing.

If you’re attending the conference, join me for my speaking session on how flash can transform you data center:

Session SPS32: Exploit Extremely Fast Storage to Accelerate Databases, Analytics and Virtualization
Wednesday, December 3 at 3:45 PM
Venetian G, Level 2
In today’s highly competitive, globalized economy, businesses are struggling to leverage their data to make intelligent business decisions and to shift gears towards increased revenue and profitability. Failure to keep pace with the demands of the marketplace will mean that your organization lags behind – impacting revenue, customer satisfaction and brand reputation. Stay ahead of the competition by harnessing the NEXUS of forces – Big Data, Cloud Computing, Mobility and Social Media – and to move forward into new business models. SanDisk provides the hardware and software that transforms your data center infrastructure to achieve higher productivity and drive business innovation.

We will bring you news and updates from these surveys and use them to share from the experiences of IT professionals and discuss innovative solutions that meet the most challenging demands and enable the future of the data center. Stay tuned for more!

What questions would you like to have your IT peers answer? Let me know at @FlashStorageMan and join the conversation with @SanDiskDataCtr. If you’d like to set up a meeting with us at Gartner Data Center, please email


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